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International Journal of Chemical Engineering
Volume 2017 (2017), Article ID 5039392, 16 pages
Research Article

Systematic Prioritization of Sensor Improvements in an Industrial Gas Supply Network

1Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA 18015, USA
2Industrial Optimization/Control, Air Products and Chemicals Inc., Allentown, PA 18195, USA

Correspondence should be addressed to Onur Babat

Received 18 September 2016; Accepted 13 December 2016; Published 31 January 2017

Academic Editor: Bhaskar Kulkarni

Copyright © 2017 Onur Babat et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The paper analyzes the impact of the sensor reading errors on parameters that affect the production costs of a leading US industrial gas supply company. For this purpose, a systematic methodology is applied first to determine the relationship between the system output and input parameters and second to identify the assigned input sensors whose readings need to be improved in a prioritized manner based on the strength of those input-output relationships. The two main criteria used to prioritize these sensors are the decrease in production costs and the decrease in production costs’ volatility obtained when the selected sensor’s precision is improved. To illustrate the effectiveness of the proposed approach, we first apply it to a simplified version of the real supply network model where the results can be readily validated with the simulated data. Next, we apply and test the proposed approach in the real supply network model with historical data.